Wednesday, 25 May 2011

That's it honey, I quit, I'm moving on...

Somebody (I’m sure it was someone important) once said that you should pick your battles wisely. I’ve been more or less following this since I realised that I don’t need to be the best in everything. So I put my knitting to a side for a moment, and fought battles with the mother of all sciences, mathematics. I won, if you’re keeping score, and I’m back.
I have however failed my first ever battle with knitting.
Generally considering myself a learner, I always try new tricks and techniques.
Cables – check
Lace – check
Pleats – check
Mattress stitch – check
Dpns – check
Gauge swatches (duh!) –check

Because I’ve been only knitting since October last year, when I pick up a project, there is bound to be something I’ve never done before. Couple of weeks ago I decided to put this beauty to test and casted on Daybreak Shawl.

It's much bigger now!

I never knitted a shawl before, but a few chocolate bars and a thousand of videos later, it’s progressing very nicely, thank you.

My first every pair of mittens was knitted flat because I was scared for my life dpns. Never mind the fact, that in my genius I cut a normal pair of circular needles and tried to sellotape it together to create a circular needle of such a  small diameter. Epic fail.

I’ve faced my monsters and in the last month I whipped up TWO pairs of mittens using 2.75mm dpn. And I enjoyed it.

So you get the point, I don’t give up so easily.

Until I started working on Witterings. The hat itself was a pleasure to work on, it was very easy and memorable pattern that didn’t require much technique apart from knitting and kfb, which I despite, but can master.

I should have known better, really. All going well, you finish the brim and then knit-front-back into every stitch. I should have heard alarm bells ringing at this point. Surely you don’t double the number of stitches for easy-peasy cast off right?

Never mind, I continued knitting one and slipping the other stitch like a faithful knitter. Then, after even more bars of chocolate I got to the actual cast off, googled tubular cast off and started working.... if you can call that. It was a disaster. My stitches were so uneven that I looked like the kitty had my Witterings for breakfast and then returned them via upper digestive system. Not pretty.
So I spent next 30 minutes undoing my failed tubular cast off and came up with this simple idea:
I’m going to thread brim wire at this point, and then do the k2tog bind off. So bind off 2 stitches, cast off another 2 stitches, pass over, k2tog, pass over... etc. Works like magic, although there are over 500 stitches there so you may need to wait for a FO photo a little longer.
Witterings-in-progess

And while on the subject of Witterings, I was failed by Ravelry too. I wanted my hat to be one colour only because it would look neater, but I only had scraps of Rowan Handknit Cotton. Checking patterns projects, it looked like I will need 2 skeins of each colour I wanted to use, so 4 skeins in total. I had 3 and a half, so I didn’t want to risk it. I came up with this idea of decreasing-increasing stripes. All good, but I’m on the bind off part now and I’ve only used 1 skein in Line and nearly 2 skeins of Decadent (purple). So I would have been fine if I wanted to knit my hat in all purple. I may make another one some other day, when “tubular cast off” doesn’t send me running away.

So, what’s your oh-no-can’t-possibly-do-it aspect of knitting?

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3 comments

  1. I've been knitting since November last year, and like you I just seem to go for it. Tubular cast on/off and provisional cast ons I still haven't got to grips with though!

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  2. Cant waite, to she that shawl grow! that yarn looked mouth watering!!

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  3. ok i'm now going to look up tubular cast on/off...mmmmmm :)

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